The Sport Matrix: Thursday 11 December 2014


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The Independent Online

Ramsey hopes for luck of the draw

Arsenal midfielder Aaron Ramsey hopes Monday’s draw for the last 16 of the Champions League will be kinder to his side than in recent seasons, when they have been paired with Barcelona, Milan and Bayern Munich in the last four campaigns. “Hopefully we will get a nice draw,” the Welshman said. “On our day, we are capable of giving anyone a game. Hopefully the draw is a bit more kind this time.”

Woakes shines as England soaked

Sri Lanka and England were frustrated by the rain in the fifth One-Day International in Pallekele, with the match due to be completed this morning. England require 240 runs for a victory that would reduce their series deficit to 3-2. The hosts were bowled out for 239, Kumar Sangakkara top-scoring with 91 runs – a fourth successive half-century – as Chris Woakes finished with six for 47.

Tottenham allow Adebayor to leave

The Tottenham manager, Mauricio Pochettino, hopes striker Emmanuel Adebayor will make a speedy return to the team after being granted leave to attend to family matters. “When you have a problem, it is difficult to give your best,” the Argentine said ahead of tonight’s Europa League trip to Besiktas. “We hope when he comes back he will be ready to start training and to help the team.

Hull on course to win Ladies Order of Merit

Charley Hull’s attempt to become the the youngest winner of the Ladies European Order of Merit started well yesterday when she shot a first-round five-under-par 67 at the Dubai Ladies Masters, reeling off three straight birdies after dropping a shot early on.

The only way the 18-year-old from Kettering can be denied the Merit title is if France’s Gwladys Nocera finishes this tournament sufficiently ahead of Hull.

Hull is just over £18,000 ahead of Nocera, the 2008 Merit winner, who shot a 69 yesterday, leaving her three shots behind leaders Carin Koch of Sweden and Shanshan Feng of China. There is £59,000 on offer to the winner in Dubai.

Robshaw at risk for England opener

England captain Chris Robshaw could miss the Six Nations opener against Wales after breaking down with a shoulder injury during Quins’ weekend match against Leinster. The flanker will discover if he needs surgery after visiting a specialist in the next few days.